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Caitlin MacNeal

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.

Articles by Caitlin

During a Wednesday night town hall moderated by CNN, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) acknowledged that the United States has a problem with racism and a lack of opportunity for minorities, but he said he wasn't sure the issue could be solved politically.

When Rubio was asked how he would address systemic racism if elected president, the Florida senator began by addressing the relationship between the police and minority communities.

He said that most law enforcement officers are "incredible people" before launching into an anecdote about racism.

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During a CNN Republican presidential town hall on Wednesday night, a self-identified support of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) asked the Texas senator to lay out how he is eligible to run for president given that he was born in Canada.

"In order to prevent future controversy and possible litigation will you please justify, constitutionally, your legal right to be president of the United States as it relates to your natural born status?" Julie Hershey asked Cruz.

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During a town hall moderated by MSNBC's "Morning Joe," co-host Joe Scarborough quizzed Donald Trump on his past statements about the Iraq War.

Scarborough referenced a book Trump wrote in 2000, in which the real estate mogul discussed weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. According to Buzzfeed News, Trump discussed how Iraq was "developing a nuclear arsenal."

"We still don’t know what Iraq is up to or whether it has the material to build nuclear weapons," Trump then wrote, according to Buzzfeed News. "I’m no warmonger. But the fact is, if we decide a strike against Iraq is necessary, it is madness not to carry the mission to its conclusion."

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During a Wednesday night town hall moderated by MSNBC's "Morning Joe," co-host Mika Brzezinski described a "political outsider" candidate, and Donald Trump incorrectly guessed that she was describing himself.

"The candidate is considered a political outsider by all the pundits. He’s tapping into the anger of the voters, delivers a populist message. He believes everyone in the country should have healthcare," she told Trump. "He advocates for hedge fund managers to pay higher taxes. He’s drawing thousands of people at his rallies and bringing in a lot of new voters to the political process, and he’s not beholden to any super PAC. Who am I describing?"

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Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Wednesday compared Senate Republicans' calls to block President Obama's Supreme Court nominee to the government shutdown in 2013.

"We’ve seen this movie before," Schumer told reporters on a press call. "When the hard right doesn’t get its way, their immediate reaction is shut it down, and Sen. McConnell marches in lockstep."

"That’s what happened in 2013 when the Republican leadership tried to shut down the government. They’re doing it today with their attempts to shut down the Supreme Court," Schumer continued. "But just as in 2013, when there was a huge public outcry and Sen. McConnell had to back off, the same will happen now. Sen. McConnell will have to back off."

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Ford Motor Company has decided to leave the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a company spokesperson confirmed on Wednesday.

"As part of our annual budget review in 2015, we adjusted our participation in several groups. We will not be participating in ALEC in 2016," Ford spokeswoman Christin Baker said in a statement provided to TPM.

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Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), who is running for re-election this year against former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI), on Tuesday said that he is not opposed to the Senate taking a vote on President Obama's nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who passed away over the weekend.

In a Sunday statement, Johnson echoed the calls of his fellow Republican senators, who have said that the next president should choose Scalia's replacement.

"I strongly agree that the American people should decide the future direction of the Supreme Court by their votes for president and the majority party in the U.S. Senate," Johnson said in a statement. "America needs Supreme Court justices who share Justice Scalia's commitment to applying the Constitution as written and to the freedom it secures."

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At a campaign rally in South Carolina on Tuesday, a man in the audience shouted "waterboard Hillary" during Sen. Marco Rubio's (R-FL) speech, according to numerous reports.

The crowd at the rally laughed following the remark, as did Rubio, according to Politico.

"I don’t want to know what he said," Rubio then said in response, according to the Washington Post. "The press is here, I didn’t even hear what they — I didn’t hear what they said. I know it wasn’t a bad word, that’s all that matters."

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